Mesa's Asian Night Market Successful Despite Coronavirus Fears

By Harry Croton
Published: Tuesday, March 3, 2020 - 12:58pm
Updated: Friday, March 6, 2020 - 1:56pm

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Asian Night Market
Jean Clare Sarmiento/KJZZ
More than 7,000 attended the Asian District Night Market event in Mesa on Feb. 29, 2020.

Mesa’s Asian District hosted an event celebrating cuisine and culture over the weekend, and the turnout was high despite fears of the coronavirus.

More than 7,000 hungry visitors attended as 54 vendors served hot food and Asian-themed beverages in west Mesa’s International Marketplace on Saturday night.

The Asian Night Market event risked drawing smaller crowds after exaggerated fears surrounding the coronavirus. The turnout, however, exceeded expectations.

“It kind of brought a little hope to all of us that this isn’t how a large population of the public actually thinks," said Vicente Reid, CEO of the Arizona Asian Chamber of Commerce. "It’s just a small, minute group of individuals who are saying things that others don’t necessarily believe.”

Asian businesses in Mesa began to experience a loss in sales after it was announced in January that a case of the virus was found in Arizona.

Saturday’s event helped alleviate those concerns and rally community support.